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date: 06 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Compassion is a feeling evoked by the serious troubles of another where the onlooker can identify with the sufferer and believes that it is possible that he or she might have the same difficulty. The troubles must not be self-inflicted. Discussions of compassion go back to Aristotle, although they were originally called “pity.” The idea of compassion rests on beliefs about the social nature of everyday life as well as clear evidence of identification with others, which is even found in newborns. The everyday world is a social world. The place of the internet and contemporary social media in these processes is discussed. The idea of spirit is discussed, as are the religious and philosophical origins of the idea. Social situations where compassion is absent are discussed. The importance of compassion in medicine is stressed. Suffering, its definition and its importance in compassion are covered.

Keywords: Compassion, emotion, sympathy, feeling, pity, Buddhism, synonymity, suffering, spirit, sociality

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